Kyrgyzstan, Korea to boost economic cooperation


By Nurzhan Kasmalieva

BISHKEK: Bishkek hosted the fourth meeting of the intergovernmental Kyrgyz-Korean Commission on Economic Cooperation on October 15.

The meeting was chaired by Minister of Economy and Commerce Daniyar Amangeldiev from the Kyrgyz side and Deputy Minister for Economic Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic Lee Seong-ho from the Korean side.

During the meeting, Minister Amangeldiev noted that the sides reached mutually acceptable decisions on all issues of the agenda, in particular on issues of enhancing bilateral trade and economic relations, interaction through the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), cooperation in education, healthcare, industry, agriculture, ecology, digitalization, coordination of labor migration, tourism, and other equally important issues.


The potential of trade and economic cooperation between Kyrgyzstan and South Korea has great prospects, but today it should be noted that the level of trade is low, which varies within the range of $100 million.

In this regard, for the purpose of practical development of economic and investment cooperation, it is important to strengthen contacts between the business circles of the two countries, the sides noted at the meeting.

The Kyrgyz minister called on the Korean side to consider the possibility of establishing Kyrgyz-Korean joint ventures on the territory of Kyrgyzstan for further entry into the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and CIS markets, because the membership of the Kyrgyz Republic in the EAEU opens up broad prospects for trade and economic cooperation, since it is not only duty-free movement of goods, but also a single transport, educational and cultural space with a population of about 182 million people.

Speaking about investments, the Kyrgyz minister called on the business circles of Korea to more actively develop investment cooperation.

“Korean entrepreneurs are widely represented in Kyrgyzstan, we must continue investment cooperation,” Amangeldiev said.


The minister of economy also noted that the Kyrgyz side highly appreciates and is grateful to the Korean side for the financial and technical assistance through the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA). After the signing in November 2013 of the Framework Agreement on Grant Aid between the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic and the Government of Korea, as well as the opening of the KOICA Representative Office in Bishkek in 2014, the amount of aid received has increased. Thus, over the years of KOICA’s activity in Kyrgyzstan, specific projects worth more than USD 40 million US dollars have been implemented in the country.

The Kyrgyz minister of economy and commerce emphasized the need to enhance cooperation in the development of digital technologies, e-commerce as, in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic it was most clearly manifested that e-commerce provides competitive advantages in international trade.

Meanwhile, Deputy Minister for Economic Affairs of Korea Lee Seong-ho stressed that the countries had not been actively exchanging experience in the development of information and communication technologies (ICT).

“Thanks to the intergovernmental meeting, we learned that the Kyrgyz side is interested in cooperation in the field of digital technologies. We understand that any country needs some support for development. Previously, we did not actively exchange experience in the field of ICT,” he said adding that if Kyrgyzstan introduces Korean know-how into industry, the results will be significant.

“Now the work is underway to sign a new industrial agreement to provide grant assistance to Kyrgyzstan,” he noted.


Lee Seong-ho also added that Korea has included Kyrgyzstan in the list of priority countries for economic partnership and is ready to cooperate in the fields of tourism and agriculture.

The Korean side expressed the interest in implementing a Smart Farm grant project in Kyrgyzstan under the KOICA, in particular, the Project for the Creation of a Pilot High-Tech Agro-Industrial Complex, which implies the creation of a complex for growing vegetables and berries using new technologies, including a management function smart greenhouses such as remote monitoring and control of temperature and humidity.

The Korean minister also stressed the need to implement joint socially significant projects in Kyrgyzstan.

The participants of the meeting stressed with satisfaction the high level of interaction in the field of cultural and humanitarian cooperation, a favorable basis for which is laid by the similarity in the culture and language of the two peoples, as well as the presence of common historical roots.


In this regard, the Kyrgyz side expressed the interest in the implementation of joint cultural events, since 2022 is the anniversary date for the establishment of diplomatic relations between the countries, the sides agreed to hold joint cultural events, including days of culture.

The Kyrgyz minister voiced the interest in organizing the visit of President of Kyrgyzstan Sadyr Zhaparov to Korea in 2022 as part of the celebration of the jubilee date – the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Kyrgyzstan and South Korea.

In addition, the sides noted that the soonest launch of direct flights between Kyrgyzstan and Korea will make it possible to intensify trade and economic interaction and make a tangible contribution to the development of the tourism industry of the two countries.

The meeting of the Kyrgyz-Korean intergovernmental commission was held in an atmosphere of friendship and mutual understanding. Following the meeting, a protocol was signed.

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